Creative Ideas for Remote Employee Appreciation in 2021

  • Studies show that employees are looking for more recognition from their employers, particularly those who are working remotely.
  • Online scavenger hunts and games are a great way to promote team building and give your employees a fun break.
  • Upgrade your employees workstations. Yes, even remotely. Not all remote workers have comfortable desk chairs at home. A great way to show your appreciation for them is to invest in their comfort.

The COVID-19 pandemic caused us to reevaluate the future of work and make swift and major changes. For years, work experts and thought leaders predicted that we would soon be working virtually due to the advancement of technology. Virtual meetings and video conferences have taken the place of in-person meetings for several companies, and many employees are checking in with their bosses via text or email. However, this doesn’t change the fact that people still want to be rewarding for their hard work and the professional skills they bring to a company. This has presented a challenge to employers who want to foster a healthy professional environment even though many team members aren’t able to work in person right now.

A 2020 Culture Report from Achievers Workforce Institute asked workers how their companies could show more support throughout the pandemic. The results indicated that 35% of those who responded to the survey choose more recognition as the main thing they needed from their employees.

It will always be important to say “thank you” to the professionals who keep your business running smoothly. However, this isn’t the only way to show your employees how much you appreciate them. Here are a few creative ideas that will make your team members feel valued and increase workplace morale.

Virtual Lunches

Schedule a time for your company’s departments to form professional relationships with one another. This is especially important if these department members don’t work together often. Virtual lunches give executives time to interact with employees face-to-face, even if the interaction can’t occur in person. Workers can ask questions and learn about the inner workings of the business in a relaxed setting to gain a better understanding of the contributions everyone brings to the company. Of course, rewarding the participants with a free lunch delivered to their home or workspace is a perk as well, and it’s another great way to show appreciation.

Online Scavenger Hunt or Board Games

In addition to sending your team members short inspirational quotes throughout the day or in the signature of your email, you can set up a virtual game for team members to find these motivational quotes during a scavenger hunt. This encourages friendly competition, whether everyone is playing individually or you break your company departments into teams. You can also play virtual versions of popular board games during your virtual social, or customize the game to incorporate company-related trivia that will help employees learn more about the business.

Upgrade Home Offices and Workstations

Working from home has its pros and cons. If you want to show your employees how valuable they are to your company, you can upgrade the furniture in their workstations or home offices. Ordering ergonomic chairs for everyone or allow team members to choose a new desk lamp as a gift from the company can make employees more productive throughout the day. These gifts can make the workday easier and show your team members that they are a valuable part of the business.

Discounted or Free Fitness Classes

Exercise is essential for those working from home, especially if the workday consists of sitting for hours to work on the computer. After a workout, people usually feel an immediate boost in their mood and mental clarity. Of course, exercise also helps people accomplish their physical health goals as well. Offer your team members discounted or free fitness classes that they can participate in virtually. When everyone on the team is healthy, this increases productivity, and this gift can increase company morale as well.

Staycation-Themed Days Off or Mental Well-Being Days

Working from home can be challenging for individuals who have other responsibilities to handle at home. Employees who have to care for children or elderly family members while working can easily become overwhelmed. Schedule a day off for the workers to log off from company systems so they won’t feel pressured to respond to emails or messages while taking a break from work. These company rest days can also have a staycation theme so you can encourage your team members to camp in the backyard with family, hike at a local park, or organize a virtual family game night.

Showing appreciation to your employees is a great way to recognize the hard work your team members have done to keep your company thriving during this challenging time. Coming up with a long-term strategy to show your commitment to company morale can result in a business that will experience continued success.

Sheryl Wright

Sheryl Wright is a freelance writer who specializes in digital marketing, inclusive business, and interior design. If she is not at home reading, she is at a farmers market or climbing in the Rockies. She currently lives in Nashville, TN, with her cat, Saturn.

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